By Dave Pehling
SAN FRANCISCO (CBS SF) — With his hands fairly full as a longtime member of NYC-based Afrofunk revivalists Antibalas and a busy solo recording/producing career under the moniker Chico Mann, it’s a bit surprising that multi-instrumentalist Marcos Garcia decided to add yet another project with his Fela Kuti-influenced heavy psych band Here Lies Man.
Teaming with drummer Geoff Mann (the son of famed jazz flute player Herbie Mann and former member of Antibalas), Garcia conjured a hazy, fuzzed-out vibe that hearkens back to long obscure Zambian and Nigerian psych-funk groups like Witch and Musi-O-Tunya that have enjoyed a resurgence in interest thanks to modern reissue campaigns by the Soundway and Now-Again labels. The band — described not inaccurately in promotional materials as the answer to the question “what if Black Sabbath played Afrobeat?” — released its debut album on stoner rock/psych label Riding Easy Records in the spring of last year and quickly made significant waves in the psychedelic underground.
While Garcia had a full calendar with the release of the first new Antibalas album in five years — Where the Gods Are In Peace, which came out on Daptone Records last September — he still managed to ramp up activity with Here Lies Man. The quartet played a couple of its earliest live shows supporting Antibalas on their fall 2017 tour ahead of releasing their four-song Animal Noises EP that featured a cover of the Fela classic “Sorrow, Tears and Blood.”
Released last month, the group’s second full-length on Riding Easy You Will Know Nothing continues to expand on the sound established by the debut recording. Introducing more percussion and keys, songs like “Summon Fire” and “Memory Games” deliver familiar propulsive grooves and chunky riffs while other tunes (“Voices at the Window” and “Floating on Water”) show off a more ethereal dimension that Here Lies Man hadn’t previously explored. The band returns to the Bay Area to headline its first show in San Francisco, topping the bill at the Chapel Monday night. The group is joined by Coventry, the solo synth side project of Mondo Drag keyboard player John Gamino.
Here Lies Man
Monday, July 2, 8 p.m. $15-$17